Emory L. Cowen Dissertation Award for the Promotion of Wellness

This award recognizes the best doctoral dissertation of the year in the area of promotion of wellness.

Deadline: December 1, 2016; December 1, 2017

Sponsor: Division 27


The purpose of the Society for Community Research and Action annual dissertation award is to identify the best doctoral dissertation of the year in the area of promotion of wellness.

Wellness is defined consistent with the conceptualization developed by Emory Cowen to include the promotion of positive well-being and the prevention of dysfunction.

Dissertations of high scholarly excellence that contribute to knowledge about theoretical issues or interventions are eligible for this award.

The winners of both dissertation awards will each receive a prize of $100, a one-year complimentary membership in SCRA, and up to $300 in reimbursement for travel expenses in order to receive the award at the APA meeting.


Dissertations completed between Sept. 1, 2012, and Aug. 31, 2014, dealing with the promotion of wellness are eligible. The range of topics include:

  • Promoting positive attachments between infant and parent.

  • Development of age appropriate cognitive and interpersonal competencies.

  • Developing settings such as families and schools that favor wellness outcomes.

  • Having the empowering sense of being in control of one’s fate.

  • Coping effectively with stress.

Any dissertation completed within these dates may be submitted.

Individuals may nominate themselves or be nominated by a member of SCRA.

Please note: Individuals may only be nominated for one SCRA award per award cycle, and all nominees must be an active member of SCRA in the past one (1) membership renewal year unless otherwise stated in the call.

How to Apply

Submit an electronic copy of a cover letter and award materials to SCRA Administrative Director Victoria Scott.

Nominations should include:
  • A cover letter and four copies of a detailed dissertation abstract should be submitted to the chair of the Dissertation Awards Committee.

  • The nomination cover letter should include the name, graduate school affiliation and thesis advisor, current address, phone number, and (if available) email address and fax number of the nominee.

  • The abstract should present a statement of the problem, methods, findings and conclusions.

  • Abstracts typically range from 4-8 pages and may not exceed 10 double-spaced pages, including tables and figures. Identifying information should be omitted from the abstract.

In the spirit of encouraging junior scholars, it is the preference of the SCRA Dissertation Awards Committee that the Best Dissertation and Emory Cowan Awards not be awarded to the same person. However, in the event that one dissertation meets the criteria for both awards and is deemed to be of such outstanding quality as to significantly distinguish itself from the other nominations, the committee may elect to award both awards to a single scholar.

Past Recipients

Lindsay Satterwhite Mayberry, PhD


Frank Snyder, PhD 

Allison Dymnicki
David Faigan
Natalie Wilkins
Andrew Lohmann
Louis Brown
Lisabeth Finn
Elise Cappella
Caren Caty
Jessica Rose Goodkind
Shaun Haines
Iain Butterworth
Emily Ozer
Sybil Madison
Itiro Yoshikawa
Lisa Blum